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Encyclopedia > Imbabura Volcano

Imbabura, with sugarcane fields in the foreground.
Elevation: 14,952 ft (4,557 m)
Location: Imbabura Province, Ecuador
Range: Andes
Coordinates: 0°26′N, 78°18′W
Type: Inactive stratovolcano
Age of rock:
Last eruption: Late Pleistocene

Imbabura is an inactive stratovolcano in northern Ecuador. Although it has not erupted for at least 14,000 years, it is not thought to be entirely extinct. Imbabura is intermittently capped with snow and has no permanent glaciers. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (842x412, 294 KB) Summary I, the creator of this work, hereby release it into the public domain. ... A topographical summit is a point on a surface which is higher in elevation than all points immediately adjacent to it. ... Imbabura is a province in Ecuador. ... The most general definition of a mountain range is a group of mountains bordered by lowlands. ... The Andes between Chile and Argentina Computer generated image of the Andes, made from a digital elevation model with a resolution of 30 arcseconds The Andes is a vast mountain range forming a continuous chain of highland along the western coast of South America. ... Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically); large version (pdf) The geographic (earth-mapping) coordinate system expresses every horizontal position on Earth by two of the three coordinates of a spherical coordinate system which is aligned with the spin axis of the Earth. ... Mountains can be characterized in several ways. ... A stratovolcano, is a tall, conical mountain (volcano) composed of both hardened lava and volcanic ash. ... The geologic time scale is used by geologists and other scientists to describe the timing and relationships between events that have occurred during the history of the Earth. ... For other uses, see Volcano (disambiguation). ... Late Pleistocene (also known as Upper Pleistocene or the Tarantian) is a stage of the Pleistocene Epoch. ... A stratovolcano, is a tall, conical mountain (volcano) composed of both hardened lava and volcanic ash. ...

Covered in volcanic ash, the slopes of Imbabura are especially fertile. In addition to cloud forests, which are found across the northern Andes to an altitude of 3000 m, the land around Imbabura is extensively farmed. Maize, sugarcane, and beans are all staple crops of the region. Cattle are also an important commodity, and much of the land on and around Imbabura, especially the high-altitude meadows above the tree-line, is used for grazing.[1] Diamond Head, a well-known backdrop to Waikiki in Hawaii, is an ash cone that solidified into tuff Volcanic ash is the term for very fine rock and mineral particles less than 2 mm in diameter that are ejected from a volcanic vent. ... The cloud forest of Monteverde , Costa Rica A cloud forest is a generally tropical or subtropical evergreen montane forest characterized by a high incidence of low-level cloud cover, usually at the canopy level. ... The Andes between Chile and Argentina Computer generated image of the Andes, made from a digital elevation model with a resolution of 30 arcseconds The Andes is a vast mountain range forming a continuous chain of highland along the western coast of South America. ... Agriculture is the process of producing food, feed, fiber and many other desired products by the cultivation of certain plants and the raising of domesticated animals (livestock). ... Binomial name Zea mays L. Maize (Zea mays ssp. ... Species Saccharum arundinaceum Saccharum bengalense Saccharum edule Saccharum officinarum Saccharum procerum Saccharum ravennae Saccharum robustum Saccharum sinense Saccharum spontaneum Sugarcane or Sugar cane (Saccharum) is a genus of between 6 and 37 species (depending on taxonomic interpretation) of tall grasses (family Poaceae, tribe Andropogoneae), native to warm temperate to tropical... Green beans Bean is a common name for large plant seeds of several genera of Fabaceae (formerly Leguminosae) used for food or feed. ... Binomial name Bos taurus Linnaeus, 1758 Cattle (called cows in vernacular usage, or kine [archaic]) are domesticated ungulates, a member of the subfamily Bovinae of the family Bovidae. ... An Alpine Meadow is a high-altitude grassland located in an alpine climate, above the treeline of a mountain. ... In this view of an alpine tree-line, the distant line looks particularly sharp. ... Grazing is the regular consumption of part of one organism without killing it by another organism. ...

Geography and geology

Imbabura is a volcano in the Pacific Ring of Fire. As the Nazca Plate is subducted beneath the South American Plate, the former melts with exposure to the hotter asthenosphere. This melted rock, which is less dense than the crust above it, rises to the surface. The result is an arc of volcanoes, which includes Imbabura, 100-300 km away from the subduction zone.[2] The Ring of Fire is a zone of frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions that encircles the basin of the Pacific Ocean. ... The Nazca plate is shown in light blue on this map The Nazca Plate is an oceanic tectonic plate in the eastern Pacific Ocean basin off the west coast of South America. ... Subduction zones mark sites of convective downwelling of the Earths lithosphere. ... The South American Plate is a continental tectonic plate covering the continent of South America and extending eastward to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. ... Dont be afraid of big words. ... Density (symbol: ρ - Greek: rho) is a measure of mass per unit of volume. ... Earth cutaway from core to exosphere. ... A volcanic arc is a chain of volcanic islands or mountains located near the edge of continents that are formed as the result of tectonic plate subduction. ...

Imbabura is the product of Strombolian Eruptions, which, in comparison to Plinian Eruptions, are relatively low-intensity and low volume. They are generally characterized by the ejection of cinders, lapilli, and lava bombs, as well as the accumulation of dark tephra around the volcanic vent. This forms a cinder cone. Imbabura’s cone is relatively exposed from erosion and easy to identify. This page is a candidate to be moved to Wiktionary. ... The Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI) was devised by Chris Newhall of the U.S. Geological Survey and Steve Self at the University of Hawaii in 1982 to provide a relative measure of the explosiveness of volcanic eruptions. ... Cinders are nut-sized pieces of red or black rock fragments resulting from the ejection of liquid lava that are uncemented vitric, vesicular, pyroclastic material, more than 2. ... Lapilli are small particles of solidified lava (tephra) thrown into the air by volcanic eruptions. ... A lava bomb is a globule of molten rock (tephra) larger than 2. ... Tephra refers to air-fall material produced by a volcanic eruption regardless of composition or fragment size. ... Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō, a cinder-and-spatter cone on Kilauea, Hawaii Volcanic cones are among the simplest volcano formations. ... } Erosion is the displacement of solids (soil, mud, rock, and other particles) by the agents of wind, water, ice, movement in response to gravity, or living organisms (in the case of bioerosion). ...

In fact, the mountain is a complex of cinder cones with varying heights. Many of them are named, including el Cubilche, Azaya (or Huarmi Imbabura), Pangaladera, Cunrru, Artezón, Zapallo Loma, Angaraloma, and Araque.[1]

Imbabura was active during the late Pleistocene and early Holocene epochs, for the last time approximiately 14,000 years ago. Future pyroclastic flows from any of Imbabura’s cones could pose a serious threat, however. From the Azaya cone, which faces West, pyroclastic flows could hit the San Pablo lake at the base of the mountain and generate devastating waves; from the Artesón cone, which faces North, pyroclastic flows could strike the city of Ibarra, with a population of nearly 300,000. For this reason, Imbabura remains closely monitored by volcanologists.[1] Late Pleistocene (also known as Upper Pleistocene or the Tarantian) is a stage of the Pleistocene Epoch. ... The Holocene epoch is a geological period that extends from the present back about 10,000 radiocarbon years. ... Pyroclastic flows sweep down the flanks of Mayon Volcano, Philippines, in 1984 Pyroclastic flows are a common and devastating result of some volcanic eruptions. ... Ibarra can mean several things: Ibarra is the capital of the province of Imbabura in Ecuador. ... Volcanology (also spelled vulcanology) is the study of volcanos, lava, magma and related geological phenomena. ...

Cultural importance

As the dominant geographic feature of the area, Imbabura is of significant importance to the local culture, which involves a spiritual relationship with the land. The mountain is sometimes personified locally as Taita Imbabura, or "Papa" Imbabura. In fact, Imbabura is considered the sacred protector of the region. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...

One of boulders ejected by Imbabura's last eruption, which landed nearby in Peguche, was revered as Achilly Pachacamac, the supreme god, by pre-Incan peoples. According to local legend, Mojanda and Imbabura each hurled stones across the valley; but Imbabura, who is often characterized as a womanizer, was weakened by his amorous affairs, and his rock fell short. The stone has been carved into the shape of a face.[3] For other meanings of Inca, see Inca (disambiguation). ... Folklore is the body of verbal expressive culture, including tales, legends, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs current among a particular population, comprising the oral tradition of that culture, subculture, or group. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Player (dating). ...

It is said that Imbabura fought with Mojanda to win the love of Cotacachi, who became his wife. When Cotacachi is snowcapped in the morning, it is said that Imbabura has been with her during the night. Building upon these legends, some of the smaller peaks nearby, especially Yanahurca (or Wawa Imbabura) north of Cotacachi, are called the offspring of the two.[4]

When it rains in Otavalo and surrounding areas, it is also said that Imbabura is "pissing" in the valley.[5] To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


  1. a b c ((Spanish)) Imbabura. URL accessed on 2006-03-16.
  2. Bourdon, E.; M. F. Thirlwall, M. Monzier, J.-P. Eissen, P. Samaniego, C. Robin, J. Cotton (2003). Magnesian andesites. (PDF) URL accessed on 2006-03-17.
  3. Achilly Pachacamac. URL accessed on 2006-03-17.
  4. Meisch, Lynn A. [2002-12-01] (2002). Andean Entrepreneurs, University of Texas Press. ISBN 0292752598.
  5. Rachowieki, Rob; Danny Palmerlee [2003-08-01] (2003). Lonely Planet Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands, Lonely Planet. ISBN 1740594649.



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